23 September 2012

The Great British Bake Off and The Scone Saga

Well, the car boot sale that usually takes place on a Sunday morning has been cancelled due to bad weather and I was left wondering what I could do to fill the time. Having just watched my recording of this weeks The Great British Bake Off, I decided to take inspiration from the Queen of Baking and make some scones. I love The Great British Bake Off  and this season has so far been really fantastic, not to mention gory! I don't know what it is about the program but after I watch it makes me want to bake. Weird right?!  lol
Now, in the past, I have tried several different recipes for scones, mostly ending in 'things' that were .... shall we say ...... less than fluffy and light. Last year, for instance, I was riveted to the TV whenever Kirstie's Hand Made Britain was on and in one of the programmes she made the most delicious looking scones to enter into a local show. I carefully copied down the recipe and rushed off to buy the ingredients. Several attempts later I had 4 trays full of something that can only be described as hockey pucks! I don't know what it is about the recipe it just seems like too much flour and not enough liquid .... but hey ..... who am I to say?! Anyway, boredom looming, I decided it was time to give it another go and this time using Mary Berry's recipe. Surely the original domestic goddess wouldn't let me down? On the plus side, Mary's recipe has no frivolities such as buttermilk but on the negative, the mixture is much stickier, like some kind industrial, super-strength, sugary adhesive that could be used to wallpaper walls .... although the taste, I'm reliably told, is much nicer :-)
30 mins later Et voila .... scones. I'm thrilled. They taste fantastic. they aren't stodgy, they're light and fluffy........ although I did have one minor panic attack when I peered into oven and thought I had burnt them. Turns out it was only the glass on the oven door that needs a jolly good clean ........ something best left for the next rainy day methinks :-)

So, here is Mary Berry's awesome scone recipe:

Makes 8 to 10

450g (1lb) self-raising flour
2 rounded tsp baking powder
75g (3oz) butter
50g (2oz) caster sugar
2 large eggs
about 225ml (8fl oz) milk

To serve
raspberry jam
clotted cream or double cream, whipped

Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas mark 7. Lightly grease two baking-sheets.

The secret to good scones is not to handle them too much before baking, and to make the mixture on the wet, sticky side.

Put the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Add the butter and rub it in until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar. Beat the eggs together and make up to 300ml (10fl oz) with the milk, then put about 2 tbsp aside in a cup for later. Gradually add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring it in until you have a soft dough. It is far better that the scone mixture is on the wet side, sticking to your fingers, as the scones will rise better.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and flatten it to a thickness of 1-2cm (½-1in). Use a 5cm (2in) fluted cutter to stamp out the scones by pushing it straight down into the dough (as opposed to twisting it), then lifting it straight out. This ensures that they rise evenly. Gently push the remaining dough together, knead lightly, reroll and cut out more.

Arrange on the prepared baking-sheets and brush the tops with the reserved beaten egg mixture to glaze. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until well risen and golden, then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool, covered with a clean tea towel to keep them moist.

Serve as fresh as possible, cut in half and spread generously with strawberry jam. Top with a good spoonful of thick cream as well, if you like.

Recipe Taken From 'My Kitchen Table: 100 Cakes and Bakes' by Mary Berry


  1. Hello, just popped over from little cottage comforts and found your lovely blog.I am your latest follower! Looking forward to reading more, I see you are a car boot addict, great by me!!

  2. Hello my fellow Cornish neighbour, thanks for following my blog and yours is lovely. Now I'm going to do my school ma'am bit I'm afraid. Your writing is difficult to read due in part to issues with grammar and paragraphing. I've signed up as a follower and wanted to let you know that you have lovely photographs.

  3. Super Blog :) Followed you from the very beginning and its just beautiful ! Keep up the great work!!

  4. I agree with the least amount of handling of the scone mixture. My mother in law told me this just lately and it has made all the difference to my scones.

  5. Thanks for stopping by over at Hen's Teeth...found you in the Spam box :) Lovely blog and I am now very happy to follow. x

  6. Hello Kay ... a very big welcome to Thriftwood! Thanks for dropping in, am going to make a cup of tea and sit down and look through yours now ... looks lovely from what I've seen, and will definitely try these scones. Will put your name in the hat ... and I think I've got an oven cleaning tip on my blog! Have a lovely day

    Claire xxx

  7. Scones are funny things aren't they? Some work & some don't. I make mine with buttermilk. Yours look delicious!


  8. Good to have found you - I hit the follower button as soon as I saw those Joules wellies at the top that I was hankering after in their catalogue this very morning! Good to read you have found a great scone recipe (you can't beat a Mary Berry recipe) - good comfort food now the chillier weather is heading our way!